By Jeffrey Fleishman; reviewed by Jeannette Hartman
The place is downtown Los Angeles. The detective of the title is Sam Carver of the Los Angeles Police Department. The possessive “my” belongs to Dylan Cross, a talented architect and a serial killer.
On the opening pages, Dylan cuts the throat of architect Michael J. Gallagher as he leaves the seedy building where he has been sketching a nude model and then disappears like a shadow into the darkness.
“A murder’s a story with an end, but you have to find the beginning,” Carver tells Gallagher’s ex-wife.
MY DETECTIVE is as much a romance as it is a murder investigation. Dylan hacks Sam’s computer and reads his diary. She knows his memories and regrets as no one else in his life does. She’s better at keeping him under surveillance than he is at finding her.
Sam Carver is a fun character to follow. He drives a battered late 1980s Porsche, lives in a renovated 1920s Italianate building catty-corner from the Biltmore Hotel. He drinks at a bar called the Little Easy. He stares from his windows at the pile of trash and treasures a homeless woman organizes across the street. As mood strikes, he brings her tea and Scotch or a $10 bill.
This book was followed by LAST DANCE.
Fleishman has worked as a foreign and national editor at the Los Angeles Times as well as a senior writer on film, art and culture. He was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in feature-writing.